What to buy and eat at Banzaan Fresh Market?
Banzaan Fresh Market in Patong Beach is an excellent experience during your holiday. It’s a lot easier to access than most local markets since it is just behind the gigantic Jungceylon Shopping Mall. Get your first glimpse of fun looking Thai fruits, amazing fishes, strange veggies and colourful sweets!
Banzaan Fresh Market (‘Banzaan’ is the Hokkien for ‘fresh market’) is very clean and bright, it might lack a bit of the local feel you get in other fresh markets on the island, but the food on display is of excellent quality and offers a wider variety as well. With such a convenient location, Banzaan is a good way to discover real Thailand the first days (You can always explore more local markets later). Banzaan Market is open all day, but it’s a lot nicer to come in the morning, even at 10, or 11 am shelves are still well supplied. Later at night, all the area around the market transforms into immense street food.
Tropical Fruit Displays
The ground floor is where all the fresh food is. Like most markets, the place is divided into zones: fruits, veggies, meat, fish and all the cooking ingredients. People are friendly and often speak a bit of English. A visit will be your chance to see a lot of unusual Thai fruits, so don’t hesitate to buy some funny looking ones and try them. Except for the pungent Jack Fruit and the well known Durian, all other fruits, even scary or weird looking, like Dragon fruit, Salai or Custard Apple are sweet and don’t have a strong taste.
Veggies corner is always fascinating, with many unknown species of plants that often look more like weed. You might recognize several ingredients used in the popular Tom Yam or Tom Ka: Lemongrass, Galangal and Kafir lime.
Meat and Fish
Meat corner is not as popular as the fish area for travellers, but everything looks a lot more hygienic than at Phuket town market or local village markets. Despite the ‘raw’ display, meat sold in markets might be fresher than the one found in ‘better presented’ supermarkets.
The fish corner is fascinating, with a large variety of very fresh fish and seafood, but what catches the eye a lot are the live hanging crabs endlessly swimming in the air, suspended by a string. Eels and catfish are still frantically swimming in their buckets and cockle shells might spit water at you is you stare at them for too long. Once you get a little familiar with Thailand, you can buy your super fresh fish here and carry it to the food court upstairs to have it cooked for a small fee. Fun and cheaper than ordering in a seafood restaurant.
The Food Court
A set of escalators takes you upstairs where you will find a bit of clothing but mostly a large food court. As mentioned earlier you can buy your seafood downstairs and carry it to one of the restaurants who will cook it for you. We haven’t tried it personally but it seems to be a popular and fun way to have a seafood lunch. The Hemingway restaurant downstairs seems to be a lot more successful. One corner of the second floor sells unbranded clothes and jeans.
Banzaan Night Market
The Banzaan Night market mostly consists of food, a lot of food! Walk around and admire a superb choice of seafood with huge prawns and the famous Phuket lobsters. Pick your seafood, weight it and pay it, someone will then grill it right in front of you.
On your way in or out, have a look at the colourful little Chinese shrine, people often miss it, but it’s kind of cute. At night the street surrounding the Banzaan Fresh Market becomes a huge night market where you can buy food, sweets or drink from dozens of food carts.
Banzaan Photo Gallery
Banzaan Market Street View
Banzaan Fresh Market Opening Hours
Location: Sai Kor Road, Patong beach, (behind Jungceylon Shopping Mall)
Open: 6 am to 9 pm
Phone: 099 619 9282
Download Banzaan Map
If you are on mobile, add it here: https://goo.gl/maps/HjrwcWaaqXTVBQx57